Luther Alumni Magazine

Class Notes, 1957–1999

1957–1959 / 1960–1969 / 1970–1979 / 1980–1989 / 1990–1999


Eli Crogan of Watertown, Wis., serves on four committees for the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association. He is chairman of the state’s Mr. Basketball selection committee and mentoring committee.

Jerry Twedt of Orlando, Fla., published his fourth book, Just a Thought or Two . . . : Observations of the 21st Century from a 20th-Century Man, available on Amazon.


Barb (Kumm) Nelson retired as choir director of four congregations after 52 years and as community choir director and accompanist after 40 years.


David Bornfleth is a volunteer math tutor at the Learning Center at Rochester (Minn.) Community and Technical College.

Karla (Stelling) Brown of Durango, Colo., works for Telluride Mountainfilm.

Joan (Bauer) and Len Bruce of Bettendorf, Iowa, are happily retired.

Susan (Usack) Burrows is program coordinator at Rainbow Animal Assisted Therapy in Morton Grove, Ill.

Mark Engebretson is professor emeritus of physics at Augsburg College in Minneapolis.

Karen Erickson-Brandt of St. Paul, Minn., is retired.

John Franke of Raleigh, N.C., is professor emeritus of mathematics at North Carolina State University.

Lenny Graves of Decorah retired as dean of CTE at Northeast Iowa Community College.

Nancy (Buenzow) and Bernie Hermanson of Cresco, Iowa, are retired.

Nancy (Johnson) Justus is a part-time substitute teacher at Prairie School, a private school in Racine, Wis.

Ed Kramer is director of the Bjornson Male Chorus of Chicago and organist at Trinity Lutheran Church in Ingleside, Ill.

Warren Luckner of Stillwater, Minn., is professor emeritus at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

Steve Mau of La Crescent, Minn., retired from Principal Financial Group.

Duane Monick of Yakima, Wash., retired from medical practice.

Judy (Wangen) Newton of Eagan, Minn., retired from Faribault Senior High School as K–12 language arts coordination teacher.

Gerald Petersen of Elkhorn, Wis., is retired.

John Rollefson of San Luis Obispo, Calif., retired as pastor at Lutheran Church of the Master.

Ken Rose retired from We Tired Acres (Scottish Highland Cattle) in Wilton, Wis.

Mike Ruzek of Austin, Minn., is retired.

Bob Sathe of Cincinnati is chairman of MCF Advisors and a volunteer committee chair for the capital campaign of Children Inc., a nonprofit organization in Covington, Ky. Funds raised by the campaign will help Children Inc. complete its mission to fight poverty by providing high-quality educational services for children and family support through a multigenerational approach.

Paul Shafland of Boca Raton, Fla., is retired.

Susan Yeager of Grand Junction, Colo., retired from Colorado Mesa University.

Karolyn (Kraling) Zbornik was ordained into the ministry of the Wesleyan Church in 2010 and is leader of the Congregational Care Team at Cedar Valley Community Church in Waterloo, Iowa.


David Franks of Marblehead, Mass., retired as pastor at Clifton Lutheran Church.

Meredith Kvalness of Saint Louis Park, Minn., is retired.

Daniel Melamedorf of McKinney, Texas, is retired.


Liz (Tenold) and Paul Tokheim ’69 of Centennial, Colo., are retired.


Kate (Stadler) Haugen is former associate vice president of student affairs for North Dakota State University. She was keynote speaker at the Minnesota Association for College Admission Counseling 2018 Leadership Summit, where she spoke about her career path with regard to leadership and management.

Scott Lee retired again. His first retirement was from 33 years of teaching at Trempealeau (Wis.) Elementary School, and his second was from teaching environmental studies at the University of Wisconsin–La Crosse.

Nancy (Arnold) VanderVort retired as executive director of the Minneapolis law firm of Felhaber Larson.


Karen Smith of Leeds, Mass., will retire in June 2018. 


Joyce Johnson of Chevy Chase, Md., coauthored a book, Lizard Bites and Street Riots: Travel Emergencies and Your Health, Safety and Security. The book focuses on remote areas but is applicable to travel anywhere. It includes topics like motion sickness, rabies, wild animal attacks, hostage survival guidelines, and travel insurance, among other things. Johnson was a Red Cross volunteer to St. Croix, Virgin Islands, immediately after Hurricane Irma and during Hurricane Maria. She was also a Project Hope disaster worker after Hurricane Haiyan in the Philippines.

Deborah (Corey) and Joe Wemette of Woodbury, Minn., are retired and spend their winters in Lake Worth, Fla. Deborah was director of community programs at FamilyMeans in Stillwater, Minn. Joe was assistant superintendent of Roseville (Minn.) Area Schools.

Jean (Hausknecht) Whipple of Olympia, Wash., is a passionate wheat weaver. She has been a member of the National Association of Wheat Weavers since 1995. Her wheat art is on display and available for purchase at Verksted Artist Cooperative Gallery in Poulsbo, Wash. She keeps this dying art alive by teaching classes and encouraging others to try out the historical craft for themselves.


Craig Cornelius is senior software engineer at Google in San Francisco. He was featured in an article in the Seattle Times for his work helping release a language learning app and Osage language keyboard for Google’s online products. His work contributed to efforts of Osage people hoping to keep the native Osage language alive.

W. D. Foster-Graham lives in Mounds View, Minn. He was named one of the Best Poets of 2003 by the International Society of Poets. He is also one of the founding members of Grammy Award–winning gospel group Sounds of Blackness.

Douglas Strand retired from teaching and coaching after 40 years at United Township High School in East Moline, Ill. He still serves on the Black Hawk College Board of Trustees, spends time at his cabin in Hayward, Wis., plays golf, and plans to travel.


Kevin Nelson of West Des Moines, Iowa, retired as an IT specialist at NASCO last year. He celebrated with a trip to the United Kingdom and now enjoys spending time with his granddaughter.

Chuck Storla of Marietta, Ga., published his first book, Zen and the Art of Christmas Letters, available on Amazon.


Cheri (Wiedenmann) and Scott Francik live in Marion, Iowa. She retired after 37 years teaching math for the Anamosa (Iowa) Community Schools. He retired after 36 years as a counselor at Anamosa State Penitentiary.


Connie Houdek is a licensed spiritual practitioner at Cityside Church in Chicago.

Karen (Brandt) Monsen is associate professor at the University of Minnesota School of Nursing in Minneapolis.

Juliann Nelson-Duffy retired as an actuary at Securian Financial Group in St. Paul, Minn.

Paul Schattauer is a family practice medical doctor at the Green Medical Practice in Oak Park, Ill.

Eloise (Hanson) Shipman of Corwith, Iowa, retired in 2015 from Corwith-Wesley-LuVerne (Iowa) Community Schools after 38 years as a drama director and art teacher.


Marti (Tieskotter) Andera is owner of Marti and Co. in Cresco, Iowa.

Barb Anderson-Bacon of De Pere, Wis., is retired.

Karen Caddoo is coordinator of adult ESL and literacy at Jeffco Public Schools in Golden, Colo.

Doreen (Volz) Dalman is library director at South Beloit (Ill.) Public Library.

Cameron Elmer of Ellston, Iowa, is a retired dentist.

Carol (Schroeder) Endres is lead toddler teacher at Open Arms Child Development Center in Glenview, Ill.

John Hanewall Jr. of Janesville, Wis., retired as deputy director with Rock County Development Disabilities Board. He is now an adjunct instructor for Upper Iowa University.

Michael Jorn of Milwaukee is a private practice licensed clinical psychologist.

Mark Larson is a consultant in gastroenterology and director of Mayo Clinic Care Network in Rochester, Minn.

Becky Lynch teaches first grade at Frassati Catholic Academy in St. Paul, Minn.

Candice (Angerer) Morales is a transfer specialist at Athene in West Des Moines, Iowa.

Rich Nicklay of Okoboji, Iowa, retired after 39 years as an instrumental music teacher.

Ron Njus is partner at NYCO Property Tax Consultants in San Antonio.

Mary (Bakke) and Steven Nurre of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, are retired after working in Asia (Seoul, South Korea, and Shanghai, China) for 30 years. They have enjoyed returning to Iowa and reconnecting with friends and family. Steven continues to coordinate teacher recruiting for Concordia International School Shanghai.

Kim Outten Stubbs of Nassau, Bahamas, is deputy director of the National Museum of the Bahamas.

Marcia (Hoff) Pitzenberger of Lansdale, Pa., retired as a research biologist with the Merck Company Foundation.

Beth (Hoven) Rotto is cheese and chill buyer at Oneota Community Co-Op in Decorah.

Kathy (Jacobson) Ruhser of Elkader, Iowa, is a retired teacher.

Everett Schmidt Jr. is youth coordinator at St. Stephen Lutheran Church in Wausau, Wis.

Rebecca (Adams) Searcy of Decorah is a retired teacher.

David Werner is IT consultant at Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research in Basel, Switzerland.

Karen (Toft) Younger retired as director of assessment and institutional research at Augustana University in Sioux Falls, S.D.


Phil Finanger retired after 35 years of teaching and coaching at Edina High School. He has been a member of the “chain gang” for the Minnesota Vikings for the past 23 years. His ten-person crew gets front-row seats at games played at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis as they carry the stakes marking first downs, recording penalties, and signaling commercial breaks for games. This year the group worked the Super Bowl.

Dayton Henderson of Kimberly, Wis., is retired.

Paul Jentz is senior recruiter of nurses and nurse supervisors for Baylor Scott & White Health in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas. He received the Caldwell Award for Dedication and Excellence from the Human Rights Campaign.

Barbara (Vaske) Norland is director of development and communications at YWCA of Greater Miami-Dade. In March, she was awarded the AXA Advisors Businesswomen of the Year Award for Outstanding Philanthropy from AXA Advisors and the Coral Gables Chamber.


James Ripley is professor of music at Carthage College in Kenosha, Wis. He led a 275-member band at the 2017 Iowa High School Music Association All-State Festival at the Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa.


Brian Berry is superintendent of the Yoncalla (Ore.) School District.

Pamella Ford is senior research scientist at Vertex Pharmaceuticals in Boston.

Nancy (Hermeier) Hershfield is associate vice chancellor for advancement at the University of Illinois in Chicago. In January, she completed an 18-month training process and became a certified professional coactive coach.

Nancy (Nickerson) and Hans Lee live in Minneapolis. She is director of arts programming at Washburn High School and managing director of the Cedar Summerstock Theater Company in St. Ansgar, Iowa. He is pastor of Calvary Lutheran Church in Minneapolis.

Cindy (Vanderford) Penney is vice president of nursing for SSM Health at St. Mary’s Hospital in St. Louis.

Olaf Trytten is an embedded software developer at CSA Group in Redmond, Wash.


Jim Angstman is a commercial realtor at Coldwell Banker Hedges Realty and a real estate developer with Vintage Living in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Karla (Nelson) Balk teaches elementary physical education at Bear Creek Elementary School in Monument, Colo.

Kris (Wurtzel) Church is senior category manager at Readerlink in Minneapolis.

Paul Cleven works in the rechargeables lab at Spectrum Brands in Middleton, Wis.

Lisa (Lyle) Deyo teaches fourth grade for the Austin (Minn.) Public Schools. She is also owner of an indie book and candy store called Sweet Reads in Austin.

Kim Hand is senior regulatory compliance specialist at Barr Engineering Company in Duluth, Minn.

Steve Haydon is senior vice president of regulatory affairs and chief legal officer at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

Lisa (Wangberg) Kelsey is director of choirs for the Ankeny (Iowa) Community Schools.

Dan Landsverk is district sales manager for Sysco Food Services in Baraboo, Wis.

Sonja (Green) Link is senior staff accountant at Courier Express Holdings in Marietta, Ga.

Greg Lonning of Maplewood, N.J., was inducted into the National Wrestling Coaches Association Division III Hall of Fame.

Brenda (Severson) Meyer of Readlyn, Iowa, is a consulting actuary for Jacobson Group.

Kathie (Johnson) Nycklemoe is associate pastor at St. Stephen Lutheran Church in Bloomington, Minn.

Wayne Ostlie is director of land protection for the Minnesota Land Trust in St. Paul.

June (Carolan) Rosett-Laures is a substitute teacher for New Hampton (Iowa) Community Schools.

Christine Rosheim is a nurse practitioner at Indian Health Service in Clive, Iowa.

Sherry Sanden-Will is fashion designer and owner at Sherry Lynn Fashions in Rochester, Minn. Her style was featured in a Rochester Post Bulletin article in December. She is also director of missions and service at Mount Olive Lutheran Church.

Arlette (Lindflott) Trana is administrative assistant at TJT Capital Group in Stamford, Conn.

Karen (Schlender) Trepton of Oconomowoc, Wis., is a real estate agent with Shorewest Realtors.

David Venne of Manassas, Va., is a self-employed consultant.

Ronald Walsh is an entrepreneur and attorney at Entitle in Bloomington, Minn.

Jane Wiemerslage is vice president of quality improvement at the Mentor Network in Edina, Minn.


Gary Fulsaas of Decorah is retired after 28 years as head athletic trainer at City University in New York.

Kris (Hahn) Henderson is vice president and general manager of cash products/banking and cash analytics at Ameriprise Financial in Minneapolis.


Tim Watson is executive director of Providence Place in Fremont, Neb.


Lisa (Palmquist) Dailey is owner of Chocolaterie Stam in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Kris Ferkin is pastor at Peace Lutheran Church in Eyota, Minn.

Robert Grant is a cardiologist at Mosaic Life Care in Kansas City, Mo.

Paula (Nixon) Hughes is a preadmission screening specialist at Metro Area Agency on Aging in St. Paul, Minn.

Linnea (Nelson) Nicol of West Union, Iowa, is district associate judge of the First Judicial District Court of Iowa.


Melanie (Fisher) Doyle is chief financial officer at Van Meter Industrial in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.


Jennifer (Birgerson) and D. Allan Boettger ’89 live in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Jennifer is director of advancement services at Coe College, and Allan is senior director of corporate and community outreach at the University of Iowa.


Steven Arndt is chief financial officer of the Nerdery in Bloomington, Minn.

Gary Crangle is materials manager for Landmark Hospital in Naples, Fla.

Allison (Huth) DeGraaf is director of teaching and innovation for the Janesville (Wis.) School District.

John Hatle is a biology professor at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. He was selected as the recipient of the Terry Presidential Professorship, an award recognizing faculty achievements.

Thomas Marquardt is a podiatrist for Mayo Clinic Health System in Decorah.

Tim Schmidt is CFO at QualiTech in Chaska, Minn.


Stephanie Agresta of Little Silver, N.J., is cofounder of the Scale Collective. She joined the board of SheWorx and is taking an equity stake in the company. In New York City in November 2016, the Scale Collective gathered 300 investors, female founders of technology companies, and industry experts to accelerate growth for women entrepreneurs. She and her cofounder will support SheWorx as advisors, provide counsel to founders, and evangelize the organization’s global mission.

Joe Dobrowits is senior engineer at Northwestern Mutual in Milwaukee.

Amie (Barsch) Odahl is a chaplain and teaches religion at Salem Lutheran School and First Lutheran School in Glendale, Calif.

Scott Putman is director of global strategy at UnitedHealth Group in Minneapolis.

Lisa (Blatti) Ratgen is risk advisor and department manager of North Risk Partners in Rochester, Minn.

Cathy (Severson) Sedacca is cofounder, principal, and executive vice president of Sage Business Credit in Minnetonka, Minn. She also serves on the board of Shobi’s Table, a St. Paul nonprofit that supports homeless and housing-insecure individuals, and is on the finance committee at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church.


Wayne Anderson is lecturer in rhetoric at the University of Iowa in Iowa City.

Benoy Benny is founder of the Spine and Sports Center in Houston.

Merrilyn (Moetsch) Berg is a seasonal tax accountant at Clifton Larson Allen in Austin, Minn.

Lena (Katzenmaier) Christiansen is a principal for the St. Paul (Minn.) Public Schools.

Sara (Peterson) Connelly is operations specialist at Buckingham Strategic Wealth, formerly called Stevens Wealth Management, in Deerfield, Ill.

Shelly (Vangen) Ferner is a certified occupational therapy assistant at Learning Charms Therapy in Charlotte, N.C.

Mary (Cumming) Hoskins is senior prospect specialist at Sunlife Financial in Kansas City, Mo.

Sonya (Lindquist) Jansma is a certified public accountant at Guinn, Vinopal, and Zahradka in River Falls, Wis.

Kerwin Kilian is service information supervisor at John Deere Dubuque (Iowa) Works.

Kari (Gere) Larson of Eagan, Minn., is director of planning and administration at Ameriprise Financial Services.

Becca (Radke) Leach is a special education paraprofessional for the Prior Lake–Savage (Minn.) School District.

Joel Lipetzky is information technology director at Land O’Lakes in Shoreview, Minn.

Jason Nosek is senior systems administrator and HCIS imaging manager at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

Kris (Korman) Novak of Minneapolis is a self-employed technology consultant.

Maria (Sjosten) Oberg is county treasury administrator for the County of Santa Clara in San Jose, Calif.

Vance Prigge is president of Atlas Insurance Brokers in Rochester, Minn.

Ted Rohlwing is territory brand manager at Kraft Heinz Company in Minneapolis.

Carrie Siewert is strategic accounts director at Mentor Mate in Minneapolis.

Karen (Weber) Sims of Frederick, Md., is security manager for the U.S. Army.

Kari (Van Auken) Stern teaches Norwegian immersion preschool at Concordia Language Villages in Bemidji, Minn.

Mitchell Thompson is senior project manager at Carmichael Lynch in Minneapolis.

Joellyn (Kilburn) Veninga of Eden Prairie, Minn., is vice president of human resources at Ecolab.

Jon Walsh is director of bands and chair of the Fine Arts Department at Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn, Ill. In 2017, he was awarded the Inspire, Empower, and Succeed Award for Outstanding Teaching in Glenbard Township High School District 87. He was also elected president of Illinois Music Educators Association District IX.

Carrie (Mahlum) Wees is quality manager at Minnesota Vet Diagnostic Lab at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis.

Mark Zobel is director of annual giving and adjunct professor of arts administration at Blackburn College in Carlinville, Ill.


Kari (Thompson) and Dennis Heimdal ’93 live in Milford, Iowa. Kari is a SMART room interventionist at Okoboji Community Schools. Dennis is an environmental lab technician at the University of Iowa State Hygienic Laboratory.

Christopher Shockey is director of human resources for Freeport (Ill.) School District 145.


Joe Waterman is lead massage therapist at Massage Logic in San Francisco.


Sarah (Voorhees) Hershberger is interim pastor at Grace Lutheran Church in Sunbury, Pa.

Ghea McPhee is a customs and revenue officer for Bahamas Customs in Grand Bahama.


Julie (Bush) Buerman of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was named the Iowa Golf Association (IGA) Women’s Player of the Year. Buerman posted numerous top finishes and was the Forever 39 Match Play in 2017. She was also a medalist at the IGA Women’s Club team event, a semifinalist in the IGA Women’s Match Play, and a third-place finisher at the IGA Women’s Four-Ball (with partner Janelle Carter). She teaches chemistry for the Cedar Rapids Community Schools and is head girls’ golf coach at Kennedy High School.


Suzanne (Dabroski) DeKay is director of safety, security, and transportation for UF Health Shands Hospital in Gainesville, Fla.

Diane (Sarafolean) Durnick earned the master of arts degree in education from Hamline University. She teaches social studies for St. Paul (Minn.) Public Schools.

Jay Kautt is advanced sales counsel, Individual Product Solutions Group, for Securian Financial Group in St. Paul, Minn.

Kat Shaner is assistant professor of New Testament at Wake Forest University in Winston Salem, N.C., and serves as pastor for the North Carolina Synod.


Brandis (McFarland) Negrin is a licensed mental health counselor. After 14 years in private practice, she opened her own practice, Brandis McFarland Mental Health Counseling, which focuses on eating disorders and related mental health issues in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Amy (Hinshaw) Nyren is a registered nurse at St. Francis Hospital in Milwaukee.

Jason Wilken is associate professor and director of collaborative research and development at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine in Iowa City.